Received October 22, 1990,Revised , Accepted , Available online

Volume 3,1991,Pages 11-28

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A laboratory scale study was conducted to assess the feasibility of the new coupling of rotating biological contactor (RBC) plus porous biomass support system (PBSS) using polyurethane foam as porous support media to biodegrade petroleum refinery wastewater. Polyurethane foam was attached on disks of two four-stage laboratory scale cascade connected RBC units.The two RBC units were operated simultaneously at different but constant, flowrates giving hydraulic loading rates of 0.01, 0.02, 0.03, 0.04 m3/m2/d in two runs keeping the same rotational speed 10 r/min throughout. Organic loading was a less controllable factor in this study.For all of the hydraulic loadings, it was found that the removal efficiency of total chemical oxygen demand (TCOD) and oil were above 80 percent. Ammonia nitrogen and phenol removal were above 90 and 80 percent respectively. The maximum biomass concentration within polyurethane foam was about 30 g/m2 in the first stage for 0.03 m3/m2/d hydraulic loading.The results show that this new technology can be applied effectively for practical purposes with moderate hydraulic loading rates.

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